Ask the RTA

Winter 2017

Got a rental problem? Email the RTA your question along with your daytime contact number and we will answer the best questions in the next edition of Open house – property managers and owners.

How many keys am I required to give the tenant when they move in? Who is responsible for key cutting?

Upon commencing a tenancy, the property manager/owner is required to hand over a number of keys to the tenants.

Keys include traditional keys, electronic key cards, swipe cards and remote controls.

There must be 1 full set of the keys that covers all lockable sites throughout the house, including doors, windows, garages, security gates, letterbox, and anything else which requires a key to open.

Additionally, all tenants who’ve signed the tenancy agreement are to be provided with a key, or set of keys, to gain access to the property e.g. security building key and front door key.

In summary, if 3 tenants are listed on the tenancy agreement, 1 tenant would receive a full and complete set of keys, and 2 tenants would receive a key/s to access the property.

It is a good idea to take photocopies of any keys provided at the beginning of the tenancy, so both you and the tenants have a record of serial numbers and can check off their return at the end of the tenancy.

Who is responsible for the wear and tear of flyscreens?

The Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 spells out responsibilities for both property managers/owners and tenants.

The tenant is to return the property at the end of the tenancy in the same condition it was at the start of the agreement, as noted on the Entry condition report (Form 1a), minus fair wear and tear. The property manager/owner is to carry out repairs and maintain the property.

If the age and condition of a door and flyscreen says 'worn and tired' it may indicate it’s the property manager/owner’s responsibility to fix the problem.

Wear and tear can also be caused by years of general use and environmental factors such as sunlight, which will deteriorate the fittings over time.

It could also be that a lack of cleaning or damage to the sliding door, caused by the tenant’s misuse or negligence, could result in the tenant being responsible for fixing the problem.

If a tenant had approval for a pet in the property, and that pet caused damage to the flyscreen, then this would be the tenant’s responsibility to rectify. Accidents during the tenancy that have caused damage may also count as an issue the tenant needs to rectify.

The Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) recommends a thorough Entry condition report at the start of the tenancy, routine inspections, and communication between property managers/owners and tenants to ensure such an issue would not escalate to a dispute.

The RTA also recommends a common sense approach, and use of its free dispute resolution service where any problems arise.

More information is available by calling the Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) direct on 1300 366 311.

The RTA is the Queensland Government statutory authority that administers the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008. We provide tenancy information, bond management, dispute resolution, investigation, and policy and education services.